283. Minutes of Secretary of State Kissinger’s Staff Meeting1


Secretary of State Kissinger—Chairman
D Mr. Ingersoll
P Mr. Sisco
E Mr. Robinson
T Mr. Maw
M Mr. Eagleburger
AF Mr. Mulcahy (Acting)
ARA Mr. Rogers
EA Mr. Habib
EUR Mr. Hartman
NEA Mr. Atherton
INR Mr. Hyland
S/P Mr. Lord
EB Mr. Katz (Acting)
S/PRS Mr. Anderson
PM Mr. Vest
IO Mr. Buffum
H Mr. McCloskey
L Mr. Leigh
S/S Mr. Springsteen
S Mr. Bremer
S Mr. Adams

[Omitted here is discussion of matters other than the European security conference or MBFR.]

Mr. Hartman: On the CSCE, I think both in your conversations with Schmidt and with Gromyko the date is going to loom large. The Soviets are coming in now from all sides saying they definitely want to nail us down and they want to have a meeting in July. they’re very [Page 821] concerned about any efforts—either consciously or not through design—to postpone it into the fall. I think, also, the European leadership is going in the same direction.

We know a little bit of that from the Germans. They want to fix the schedule. They want to fix their calendars, and Schmidt particularly—he’s thinking of the third week in July—so that will come up at that time.

The Europeans have come up with a minimum package2 now to really wind up that Conference, and we’re supporting it. It has everything in it that one could expect, and there are some concessions the Soviets are going to have to make.

Secretary Kissinger: I don’t know what I expect. What does it have in it?

Mr. Hartman: It has the minimum acceptable texts on all of the humanitarian affairs. You’ve got family reunification, marriage texts—what are the others?

Mr. Hyland: Travel.

Mr. Hartman: Travel.

Mr. Hyland: Radio broadcasting, exchange of information—radio broadcasting where there will not be a commitment.

Secretary Kissinger: Will I get a memo?

Mr. Hartman: You will have a memo which should be with you now, which gives you a status report.

Secretary Kissinger: Where is it, Jerry? Where are any of these memos?

Mr. Adams: I think they’re in your action folders.

Secretary Kissinger: This I have to read before I go to Europe.

Mr. Hartman: On dates, I’d like to be able to tell people—for example, on the President’s schedule in Brussels—give them the exact hour.

Secretary Kissinger: You can not, until I have shown it to the President.

Mr. Hartman: I wondered whether you had done that.

Secretary Kissinger: I can’t show that to the President until my friends here put it in my folder to take to the President.

O.K. As soon as that’s done, I’ll take it to the President, along with his statement. Where is that?

Mr. Adams: It’s in a special folder.

[Page 822]

Secretary Kissinger: If you want me to take it up with the President, you might put it in the folder with the papers that I’m taking to the President. That isn’t an unreasonable request, is it? (Laughter.) It doesn’t mean I’m harassing you.

Mr. Hyland: According to what Art said, my figures say there will be 175 hours in speeches at the CSC (laughter)—if the present plan prevails.

Secretary Kissinger: Which is what?

Mr. Hartman: 20 minutes a head at that.

Mr. Hyland: 20 minutes a head. But this is—

Secretary Kissinger: How can that be?

Mr. Lord: That with 50 countries? (Laughter.)

Mr. Hyland: I’m just kidding. This is an issue that has to be taken up—how long it’s going to last.

Mr. Hartman: Schmidt would like to have five days in order to allow for good long bilaterals with people.

Secretary Kissinger: It’s absolutely out of the question. Our press will kill us. It will be an unbelievable nightmare to have five days.

Mr. Hyland: Most Europeans want at least four.

[Omitted here is discussion of matters other than the European security conference or MBFR.]

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Transcripts of Secretary of State Kissinger’s Staff Meetings, 1973–1977, Entry 5177, Box 6, Secretary’s Staff Meetings. Secret.
  2. Telegram 3570 from Geneva, May 15, contains the complete text of the West’s “global initiative for human contacts and information,” presented to the Eastern delegations to CSCE the same day. (National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy Files)